Ellagic acid

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A cream-color powder formed as a metabolite from the oxidation of Gallic acid. Ellagic acid occurs naturally in galls as well as Leather that have been tanned with galls. It was isolated as a distinct compound by Chevreul in 1815. Ellagic acid is used as a Tannin and as a pale-green to gray Dye with Iron mordants. It is being studied as a cancer preventing drug.

Synonyms and Related Terms

benzoaric acid; bezoardic acid; 4,4',5,5',6,6'-hexahydrodiphenic acid 2,6,2'6'-dilactone

Chemical structure

Ellagic acid.jpg


  • Fisher Scientific: MSDS

Physical and Chemical Properties

Soluble in alkali and pyridine. Slightly soluble in water or ethanol. Insoluble in ether.

UV max 366, 255 nm

Composition C14H6O8
CAS 476-66-4
Melting Point >300 C
Molecular Weight mol. wt.=302.19

Resources and Citations

  • The Merck Index, Martha Windholz (ed.), Merck Research Labs, Rahway NJ, 10th edition, 1983 Comment: entry
  • Matt Roberts, Don Etherington, Bookbinding and the Conservation of Books: a Dictionary of Descriptive Terminology, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington DC, 1982
  • F. Crace-Calvert, Dyeing and Calico Printing, Palmer & Howe, London, 1876 Comment: p. 321